Tag Archives | Consumers Association of Ireland (CAI)

LoCall numbers could cost you extra

It was this news article from Paul Kelly in the Irish Examiner that started my work on what eventually became the SayNoTo1890.com website. That’s 9 years ago now, and still nothing much has been done to alleviate the issue for Irish consumers (apart from this site obviously :-))


LoCall numbers could cost you extra - The Irish ExaminerLoCall numbers could cost you extra
By Paul Kelly, Consumer Correspondent
Tuesday, July 31, 2007
CONSUMERS are needlessly paying out up to €5 a time to ring “low cost” telephone numbers like those beginning 1890 — even though they could get the calls for next to nothing.

Banks, airlines, Iarnród Éireann and the Revenue encourage consumers to ring their LoCall 1890 telephone numbers at local call rates costing 4.9cent a minute in the daytime and 1.26c off-peak.

But dialling the numbers from a mobile phone could cost up to €4.90 for a 10-minute call while landline customers could similarly find themselves out of pocket. This is because popular landline phone deals like Eircom’s exclude LoCall 1890 numbers, Callsave 1850 and national 0818 calls from the offer of unlimited landline calls while mobiles have higher fees for “low cost” numbers.

Yet consumers can beat the trap if they dial the alternative numbers listed by many organisations on their websites or in phone books alongside their 1890, 1850 and 0818 numbers.

For instance, customers on Eircom’s Talktime Anytime package, would pay 49c for a 10-minute call to the AIB phone banking 1890 242424 hotline as such numbers are not part of the offer of unlimited calls.

But if customers dialled the hotline on AIB’s alternative number of 01 6670024 then the call would be included in their €39.99-a-month fee for unlimited calls.

Similarly, an Eircom customer on the Talktime 15c package pays €25.99 a month for line rental and then 15c per landline call no matter how long they talk for.

But if they have to make a 10-minute call to Ticketmaster’s 0818 719300 number for booking a concert ticket then they will pay 82c for a daytime call or 49c in the evenings.

Had they telephoned the ticket company’s alternative number 01 4569569, then they would pay a standard 15c flat fee.

By dialling the national 0818 number customers are paying up to 81% more for the call than they need to as the Talktime 15c package only covers standard phone numbers.

From a mobile a 10-minute call to a Ticketmaster 0818 line costs up to €4.90 with Vodafone, €2.50 with Meteor and €3.10 with O2.

Subscribers to landline phone firms’ deals pay 6.35c extra every time they call the 1850 Callsave numbers used by the likes of Bord Gáis, ESB and the VHI.

But if they have all-inclusive packages then they can save by dialling standard numbers and avoid paying out extra.

Yesterday, the Consumers’ Association of Ireland (CAI) said that firms with 1850, 1890 and 0818 numbers should do more to make their customers aware of how to make their calls cheaper.

“More organisations are using these numbers as a convenient way for customers to get in touch yet these numbers can cost a fortune,” said CAI chief executive Dermott Jewell.

“Phone companies should include 1890 or 1850 numbers in their deals and should not be charging consumers extra as these are still landline calls,” he said.

10 of the Worst Rip Offs – From You And Your Money

YouAndYourMoney-LogoYou And Your Money

September 25th, 2007

This was published recently in the You and Your Money print magazine, and it’s available here online also. This is only a subsection of the whole article – just the bits relevant to this website.

Beat the rip-off merchants! Brenda McNally rounds up the top ten rip-offs to watch out for.

From banking errors and dodgy billing practices to straightforward overcharging, big business has little hesitation about squeezing Irish consumers. Fortunately, industry watchdogs and consumer groups are flexing their muscles on our behalf.

But if you really don’t want to be ripped off in 2008, don’t repeat the mistakes of the past.

Take a look at our list of the top 10 ways consumers were ripped off in 2007 and, if you think you’ve been overcharged, don’t just pay whatever price you’re asked: exercise your vocal chords, query the bill and complain.


Locall and Callsave

Locall (1890) and Callsave (1850) telephone numbers look like a cost-saving option on paper, but that’s not the case for all of us. Irish consumers who are signed up to special telephone and mobile packages are needlessly paying up to €5 a time to ring ‘low cost’ telephone numbers.

This is because these numbers are excluded from the popular mobile and landline phone deals with exclusive minutes. The Consumers’ Association of Ireland (CAI) has highlighted the issue, calling on phone companies to include 1890 or 1850 numbers in their deals.

It has also said that firms with 1850, 1890 and 0818 numbers should do more to make their customers aware of how to make their calls cheaper.

If you’re on a special telephone package, make sure to check how much Locall and Callsave will cost you – if they cost more, try to find out the ordinary number for whatever company you’re looking to call. Why hold…

Alternative LandLine Numbers

You can beat the trap if you dial the ordinary landline numbers of companies: these should be listed on their websites or in telephone books alongside their 1890, 1850 and 0818 numbers. You can take down these numbers for a start:

AIB Phone Banking: 1890 242424 – use 01 6670024

Bank Of Ireland Phone Banking: 1890 365 365 – use 01 4044470

Bord Gais Energy Supply: 1850 632 632 – use 01 8190395

ESB Customer Supply: 1850 372 372 – use 01 8529534

VHI: 1850 44 44 44 – use 056 7753200

Hibernian Health: 1850 71 77 17 – use 056 7753200

Ticketmaster Ireland: 0818 719300 – use 01 4569569.

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